With more families facing hardship this year, the need to serve those most vulnerable is greater than ever before.
Each year, The Salvation Army provides food and toy assistance to more than 4 million people across the country. To help meet the increased need this year, we are making it safer and simpler than ever for people to donate toys and funds to The Salvation Army.
Our Angel Tree program offers corporate partners and local businesses an opportunity to engage their customers and employees in providing new, unwrapped toys for children who would otherwise go without on Christmas morning. This year we know COVID-19 may be affecting your operations so we are offering our Angel Tree program either in-person or virtually. Will you help us to Rescue Christmas for families in need this year?
The Angel Tree program is one of The Salvation Army’s highest profile Christmas efforts. Angel Tree was created by The Salvation Army in 1979 by Majors Charles and Shirley White when they worked with a Lynchburg, Virginia shopping mall to provide clothing and toys for children at Christmastime.
The program got its name because the Whites identified the wishes of local children by writing their gift needs on Hallmark greeting cards that featured pictures of angels. They placed the cards on a Christmas tree at the mall to allow shoppers to select children to help. More than 700 children had a brighter Christmas that first year.
Three years later, when the Whites were transferred to Nashville, Tennessee, Angel Tree was launched in the Music City. WSM radio, which airs the Grand Ol’ Opry, came on board that year as the first Angel Tree co-sponsor in the U.S.
Because of the on-air promotion on WSM in Nashville, as well as national publicity on CNN and the Larry King Show, news of Angel Tree spread across the country. Today, Angel Tree’s are available at Salvation Army’s across the nation.